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Building My First PC and Could Use Some Advice and Part Check ($1000-$1300)

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March 15, 2014 11:44:57 AM

Hi everyone. I'm looking to build my first PC and need advice on my part choices. This will primarily be a gaming PC and then just internet browsing, netflix, and such.

My goal is to be able to play most current games at ultra/max setting at 1080p with 60+ fps. So first, I would like some feedback on if that is a realistic goal with this build. Also any suggestions on alternatives to these parts that could possibly get me more bang for my buck would be awesome.

The main component I am unsure about is the motherboard--I don't really know what features look for when picking one out, what is needed if I want to over clock, and what a good cost/performance ratio is for one. I could also use some advice on a good case to pick out; I'm not concerned with the look so much as I am that everything fits and there is enough room that stuff won't overheat. Lastly, is my CPU cooler good enough for over clocking if I choose to do it in the future?

Approximate Purchase Date: 2-3 months
Budget Range: $1000-1300 (not including accessories/monitor/OS)
OS: Windows 8.1 Pro
Overclocking: Yes, I would like to in the future when I get a better handle on how system tuning works
SLI: That might be my first upgrade when I notice I'm starting to fall behind new games (I would use another GTX 770)

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Micro Center)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($57.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 770 2GB Video Card ($339.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: EVGA SuperNOVA 650W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ B&H)
Total: $1013.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-03-15 14:20 EDT-0400)

I also have a couple miscellaneous questions that I would like to get people's input on if you have a chance:
-What kind of virus protection software should I get for a gaming PC? I can get McAfee free from my school. Will that be ok? Are there any issues with it slowing down the system?
-Any suggestions for a good monitor in the $150-$300 range that would match the specs of my build.


March 15, 2014 11:55:39 AM

i would go with a better psu this one is more reliable
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/xfx-power-supply-p1650snlb...
the memory you have chosen is fine but you would see the same performance with ram of 1600 and a cl8 in gaming
since your budget goes to 1300 you could then you could get a 780 i would suggest this since games are only going to get more demanding as time goes on

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3alfz
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3alfz/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3alfz/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($209.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($57.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($509.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ B&H)
Total: $1213.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-03-15 14:55 EDT-0400)

any antivirus will be fine. and for the monitor do you prefer better picture quality or higher refresh rate? ips have better picture quality but are capped at 60-75hz refresh rate. some tn panels have very high refresh rates promoting smoother gameplay but the picture quality is not as good
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March 15, 2014 12:11:51 PM

Thanks for the feedback Bad_Kitty13! As far as the monitor goes I'm not really sure. Could you give me an idea of what kind of framerate I can expect to get from my build? If I'm maxing out at around 60 anyways then would it be better to get a better picture quality monitor? I'm not really sure how that all works.
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March 15, 2014 12:45:01 PM

Also, in terms of future proofing with the 780, what if I upgraded to an SLI 770 setup in the future? Even though it's more expensive it would allow me to split up the cost over time and still lead to better performance in the end right?

In that case would I need a higher wattage PSU?

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March 15, 2014 12:46:51 PM

for the 770
http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/evga_geforce_gtx_7...
for the 780
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/EVGA/GTX_780_SC_ACX_...
both cards get good frame rates the 780 does get higher specs and if you want a higher refresh rate for smother gameplay then i would definately go with the 780. imo if you have the money you should go with the 780 anyway. my recommendation on scrren size is....24" is the sweetspot for 1080p and 27" is also really nice. i own 2 27" ips and i love them, the picture quality is so much more clear and crisp. its really personal preference as to what you want.
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March 15, 2014 12:48:54 PM

and for 780 770 sli you should get around a 850w just so you have some headroom depending on the 780's you might have to 1000w

for the 770s sli that is a good idea ad the performance will be outstanding so you could def go that route if you like
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March 15, 2014 1:21:22 PM

ok you convinced me, I will go with the 780 for now. And I will definitely check out those ips monitors. Just two more questions and I think I'm set.
-Is this a decent motherboard and do I really get much more for getting a pricier one around the $180 range?
-Can I safely over clock in the future with this setup?

New Build
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Micro Center)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.95 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($57.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($489.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ B&H)
Total: $1187.87
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-03-15 16:18 EDT-0400)
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Best solution

March 15, 2014 1:26:16 PM

yes
i read a review and it seems to have good vrm cooling for overclock and performs quite well stock and overclocked
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2013/07/22/msi-z87-g45...

and with that psu you can handle 2 780's and the rest looks good to go as well.
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March 15, 2014 1:46:01 PM

great! thank you!
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March 15, 2014 1:50:58 PM

no problem!!
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